MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Five weeks after a young Hudson mother was killed in a car crash, her family wants you to know her story as part of April’s Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

Megan Goeltz died in a crash while sitting idle at a stop sign in Washington County. A 20-year-old driver crossed the road, bounced out of a ditch, and crushed her car. Troopers are looking into possible charges.

Now, Megan’s father and sister hope her story will help save others.

“We’re in that beginning stage right now, so the waves are big,” Megan’s father Tom said. “So when it hits you, you can’t do anything for a while. You just gotta take up the moment and collect yourself and move on.”

It’s just a way to survive, because their spunky, cheerful, loving middle daughter did not pull through.

“She’s very beautiful, and they wheeled her into our room after the accident when she was already deceased, and those images will stay with us forever,” Tom said.

Megan’s sister Melissa was shocked when she first heard the news.

“I couldn’t breathe when my dad called. I couldn’t breathe,” she said. “I’d never felt that much pain before in my life.”

Besides a sister, a daughter and a beloved nursing home caregiver, Megan was also a mom. Her daughter Paisley now has children’s books on dealing with grief — books no child should need.

But the worst news was that Paisley was about to have a baby brother.

“It makes it even harder, I think, knowing that she was going to have another baby,” Megan’s mother Wendy said.

What also makes it hard is how her father makes a living — as a safety consultant teaching people around the country about distracted driving.

“I was passionate about my job before, but it’s bumped that up exponentially now,” he said.

Amidst a situation they had no choice in, the family says the rest of us have one of our own.

“You can change the way that you approach driving by going through something like this, or you can learn from people like us,” Tom said.

Megan’s father has already been asked to advocate for a national group — he says its his life’s new mission.

The mother of the driver of the other car says her heart goes out to Megan’s family, and that their family is aching too. She says this was truly an accident.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield

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